I am in the middle of finishing a divorce and after a couple of months my income changed due to me either having to quit my job or move to part time. I went to part time and now make under $850 a month. Is there a way to send this in so that things can be changed for the child support? There is just NO WAY i can afford over $350 a month that he wants now. We still haven't signed any papers for the Parenting Plan but all this is what the courts need to finish so that we can meet before the judge and finish everything. We are going on this for almost a year now. I just can't afford to get any help and legal aid said they couldn't help because of a conflict of interest since we works for the state of Colorado
Juvenile Law Attorney
You have probably already submitted a Sworn Financial Statement as part of your divorce. You can most likely submit a revised sworn financial statement to the court and to your spouse or your spouse's lawyer. However, if the court finds that you are voluntarily underemployed, it may impute income to you under Colorado Revised Statute14-10-115. This means that the court could find that you are capable of working full time and earning more and still determine your child support based on a higher income. Under 14-10-115, you will not be deemed underemployed if
(A) The employment is temporary and is reasonably intended to result in higher income within the foreseeable future; or
(B) The employment is a good faith career choice that is not intended to deprive a child of support and does not unreasonably reduce the support available to a child; or
(C) The parent is enrolled in an educational program that is reasonably intended to result in a degree or certification within a reasonable period of time and that will result in a
higher income, so long as the educational program is a good faith career choice that is not intended to deprive the child of support and that does not unreasonably reduce the support available to a child.
If a support order has already been entered, you may be able to file a Motion to Modify Child Support pursuant to Colorado Revised Statute 14-10-122(b) if your reduced income has resulted in more than a 10% difference in the amount of child support you should pay, and your income change has been substantial and continuing.
It would be helpful to have legal assistance to finalize your divorce. Since Colorado Legal Aid cannot help, you might try Metro Volunteer Lawyers or attending one of the free legal clinics offered through the local bar associations and at organizations like Mi Casa.
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Divorce / Separation Lawyer
Melanie's answer is right on with respect to the statute. You need to get a sworn financial statement filed that reflects your current situation and you need to make sure that the other side knows about your new financial situation, so that they can make the necessary adjustments in your case. This is urgent. I would very strongly recommend that you seek an hour or less of assistance from an attorney. Most attorneys have computer programs that can do all of the calculations for statutory child support for you, so that you can clearly see what you are doing in these negotiations. Some attorneys give free 30 minute consultations...
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